From Umar Usman Duguri
An Abuja based anti-corruption crusader group, The Other Alternative, has drawn the attention of Bauchi State Governor, Sen. Bala Muhammed to the suspected sordid past of Ahmed Ma’aji as permanent secretary in the Ministry for Local Governments and Chieftaincy when the ministry was turned to gold mine for the corrupt and certain suspected unholy carried out by the past administration.
In a press release signed by leader of the group, Barrister Ladan Abdullahi and made available to journalists, the NGO stated that, Ahmed Ma’aji, happens to be the most senior permanent secretaries in Bauchi State civil service that was handed over the affairs of the State Civil Service as acting Head of Service after the mandatory retirement of the incumbent, Nasiru Yelwa, that may likely create more room for further ridicule of the state administration particularly the report of the Recovery Committee that might have indicted Ahmed Ma’aji in the scam of the purchase of N96million horses and supply of over N2.3billion mahogany and loin cloth for the burial of dead Muslims at Bauchi central cemetery alone.
“Ahmed Ma’aji was the permanent secretary and accounting officer of the ministry that facilitated the claimed purchase of horses at N96million by the former state administration which was made public by the sacked commissioner for the ministry, Nasirudeen Muhammed at a ministerial press briefing in Bauchi as part of the ministry’s recorded achievements for the development of Bauchi state
“The same Ahmed Ma’aji was instrumental to the award of suspected bogus contracts to unregistered contractors for printing of campaign posters, banners and other political handbills at unbelievable costs in violation of the provisions of the Public Procurement Act 2007 and Financial Regulation”, Ladan said
It further stated that with the determination on display by Governor Bala Muhammed to retrieve stolen public funds and properties carted away by scammers, fraud and tricksters, the acting appointment of Ahmed Ma’aji as Head of the Civil Service may send a wrong signal to members of the public on the seriousness of the government to retrieving what were stolen and possibly jeopardize government efforts through extensive lobbying and other ungodly ways by those indicted with time, pointing out that,” the governor has every right to appoint any other senior permanent secretary adjudged as clean for the acting position pending when the report of the Recovery Committee is exhausted and Ahmed Ma’aji exonerated from any suspected implication in the various scams”.
The Other Alternative appealed to Governor Bala Muhammed to endure the rigors of going through the Recovery Committee Report to be positioned to flush out all those that contributed in any way to the stealing and diversion of public funds against their respective Oaths of Office.